Tai Woffinden

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Tai Woffinden
Tai Woffinden (cropped).jpg
Personal information
Nationality  United Kingdom
Date of birth (1990-08-10) 10 August 1990 (age 24)
Place of birth    Scunthorpe, England
Website www.taiwoffinden.com
Current club information
Polish league WTS Wrocław
Swedish league Elit Vetlanda
Career history
Scunthorpe Scorpions
Rye House Rockets
Poole Pirates
Włókniarz Częstochowa
Wolverhampton Wolves
Start Gniezno
Sparta Wrocław
Elit Vetlanda
2006-2007
2007-2008
2007
2008-2010
2009-2014
2011-2012
2013–
2014–
Speedway Grand Prix statistics
2009 Number 1 / 108
Starts 31
Podiums 9 (3-4-2)
Finalist 10 time
Winner 3 times
Individual honours
Western Australia Under 16 Champion
Conference League Riders Champion
British Under 18 Champion
British Under 21 Champion
Premier League Riders Champion
British Champion
Czech Republic Grand Prix Winner
Swedish Grand Prix
World Champion
2006
2007
2007
2008
2008
2013, 2014
2013, 2014
2014
2013
Team honours
Elite League Champion
Premier League Champion
Conference League Champion
Conference Trophy Winner
Conference KO Cup Winner
Conference Shield Winner
2009
2007
2006, 2007
2006, 2007
2006, 2007
2006
Tai Woffinden 2.jpg

Tai Woffinden (born 10 August 1990, in Scunthorpe, England) is a speedway rider. In 2013 he became World Speedway Champion and currently rides for the WTS Wrocław in the Polish Speedway Ekstraliga and Elit Vetlanda in the Swedish Elitserien.[1] Until the end of 2014 he also rode for the Wolverhampton Wolves in the British Elite League, but announced in late 2014 that he would not be riding in Britain during 2015 in his quest to regain his World Championship.[2]

Woffinden is the current captain of the Great Britain team that finished fourth in the 2014 Speedway World Cup Final in Bydgoszcz, Poland.

Early Life[edit]

He is the son of former speedway rider Rob Woffinden. Although born in England and competing as a British rider, Tai grew up in Perth, Western Australia after his parents Rob and Sue decided to move down under in 1994 and he still considers Perth to be his home.

Career[edit]

Waffinden began his career in junior speedway in Perth where he won the 2006 Western Australian Under-16 title, though he unfortunately missed riding in the Australian Under-16 Championship in Adelaide.

Woffinden started his British career with the Scunthorpe Scorpions in the Conference League in 2006. When he turned sixteen years of age he made his Premier League debut for the Sheffield Tigers as a guest rider. He is an asset of Wolverhampton Wolves after he signed a full contract with the Elite League side in 2006.[3]

2007 saw Woffinden return to Scunthorpe in the Conference League and signed on a season's loan with the Rye House Rockets in the Premier League. In August 2007 he also signed for the Poole Pirates in the Elite League to ride at reserve, sharing the spot with Rye House Rockets team-mate Steve Boxall for the rest of the season.[4]

Woffinden signed for the Rye House Rockets again for the 2008 season. He also made his debut for Great Britain in the Speedway World Cup, impressing with a win against world class opposition.[5][6][7] He also finished third in the British Speedway Championship. This finish qualified Woffinden to be a track reserve at the British Grand Prix but he did not have an opportunity to ride.[8] Woffinden has agreed to ride for his parent club, the Wolverhampton Wolves, for the 2009 Elite League season.[9]

Honours[edit]

With the Scunthorpe Scorpions in 2006 he completed a clean sweep of Conference League trophies, winning the Championship, Conference Trophy, Conference Shield and the Knockout Cup.

In 2007, Woffinden became the youngest ever rider to appear in the British Championship Final but suffered injury in a crash and had to withdraw from the meeting. In September he became the Conference League Riders Champion and then two days later won the British Under 18 Championship.

The Rockets clinched the Premier League Championship in 2007 after beating the Sheffield Tigers in the final.

Woffinden became British Under-21 Champion in 2008. The event was held at the Arena Essex Raceway, with Woffinden only dropping one point in the qualifying heats and winning the final ahead of Adam Roynon and Ben Barker.[10] Woffinden is the first rider to hold both the British Under-18 and British Under-21 title during the same season. He was also the first rider to be the British Under 18 Champion for two consecutive seasons. On 15 April 2011 Tai Woffinden won the British Under 21 Championship, held at the Arena Essex Raceway.[citation needed]

After his father's death from Cancer in 2010, the Rob Woffinden Classic has become one of the biggest events for speedway bikes in Western Australia. Tai won the Classic named for his late father in 2012 at the 142 metres (155 yd) Pinjar Park Speedway in Perth.[11]

In 2013 Woffinden won the Speedway Grand Prix series to become World Champion.[12] Woffinden is the 7th British rider to become World Champion and the first one to hold the British Championship and World Championship in the same year since Gary Havelock in 1992. He is also the youngest World Champion in the modern day GP competition. He also won Motorcycle News Man of the Year Award for 2013.

Career details[edit]

World Championships[edit]

Speedway Grand Prix results[edit]

Year Position Points Best Finish Notes
2010 14th 49 7th Debut in SGP season.
2011 25th 2 16th Track wildcard at Cardiff GP.
2013 1st 151 1st Six podium finishes including his first SGP win at the Czech Republic Grand Prix. He eventually finished the season as World Champion with 151 points.
2014

SGP Podium[edit]

  1. Czech Republic Prague (18 May 2013) - 1st place
  2. Poland Gorzów (15 June 2013) - 3rd Place
  3. Italy Terenzano (3 August 2013) - 2nd Place
  4. Latvia Daugavpils (17 August 2013) - 3rd Place
  5. Slovenia Krško (7 September 2013) - 2nd Place
  6. Finland Tampere (17 May 2013) - 2nd Place
  7. Czech Republic Prague (31 May 2014) - 1st place
  8. Sweden Målilla (14 June 2014) - 1st place
  9. United Kingdom Cardiff (12 July 2014) - 2nd place

SGP Finals[edit]

  1. European Union Poland Bydgoszcz (20th April 2013)

Speedway European Championship results[edit]

Year Position Points Best Finish Notes
2013

SEC Podium[edit]

  1. Poland Gdańsk (27 July 2013) - 3rd Place

SEC Finals[edit]

  1. Russia Togliatti (10 August 2013)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Oakes, Peter (2006). Speedway Star Almanac. Pinegen Ltd. ISBN 0-9552376-1-0. 
  2. ^ Woffy Sits Out Elite
  3. ^ "Woffy a Wolf". BSPA. 2006-10-17. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  4. ^ Bamford, Robert (2007-03-01). Tempus Speedway Yearbook 2007. NPI Media Group. ISBN 0-7524-4250-3. 
  5. ^ "Tai Woffinden shines but Britain crash out". Daily Mirror. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  6. ^ "Team GB in FIM Speedway World Cup race off". Daily Express. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  7. ^ "Teen star Tai Woffinden wins World Cup place". Daily Mirror. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  8. ^ "Nicholls regains British Speedway Championship". Daily Express. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  9. ^ "Wolves Tai up Woffinden". Sky Sports. 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  10. ^ "Tai takes national crown". WorldSpeedway.com. 2008-04-26. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  11. ^ 2012 Rob Woffinden Classic Final
  12. ^ "Tai Woffinden wins speedway world title in Torun", BBC, 5 October 2013. Retrieved 6 October 2013

External links[edit]